A client of mine was telling me how his customers are always trying to commoditise what he does. Whilst his company spends time, money and effort developing solutions to their problems and they start to do repeat business, he told me their customers would eventually begrudge paying their price and invariably some would find someone who professed to offer the same for less.
Whilst everyone knows that where something professes to be the same and costs less, it is invariably found to be inferior because it has a lower value. Unfortunately for him that doesn’t stop his customers being willing to ignore that to the point and every now and then some of them will move away to save a little money.
I explained to him that somewhere along the way their customers had clearly began to believe that what they were getting had become a commodity, that it was no longer special or in any way unique. That happens … a lot. In fact, in a world where more information is available more easily it happens a heck of a lot. Too much!
“What you can do about it is to regularly change your offering; improve it”, I told him. As Bill Gates said, “The company that does not obsolete its own products runs the risk of becoming extinct!” Nothing in business stands still, and if you think you’re standing still you’re really going backwards. We have to change and improve or risk being caught and worse still, overtaken.
The change doesn’t have to be an expensive R&D commitment comprising of months of research, investment and testing; sometimes it can just be a simplified ordering process, easier payment or online ordering, or the implementation of a regular account overview and recommendations to improve the benefit your customers derive from using your products / service.
What matters is that we keep looking to improve, that we don’t stand still.
In doing so where we have competition snapping at our heels we become a moving target and as everyone knows they’re hard to hit.
Think about your products and services. Think about your competition and how long you’ve maintained the same offering for. Think if you’re facing more and more challenges. When was the last time you changed anything? If you’re facing more competition more frequently then it’s a sign that you need to move and change something … just do it!
Learn how the most successful salespeople differentiate themselves and create new markets where they don’t have competition so you can achieve better results now! Click here for details on my ebook Make Your Own Market – Look for the Future module.